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Students Go to China for International Business Class

Ten Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) students enrolled in the Special Studies in International Business class in the Doermer School of Business and Management Sciences (DSBMS) will begin the trip of a lifetime this Thursday, March 5, as they head to China. The students will be studying and staying in Shanghai and Beijing where they will learn about the Chinese economy, business culture, and cultural differences between China and the United States. The students will also visit five companies covering different industries and different types of organizations.

While the students are learning about Chinese business customs, they will also be doing market research for two Fort Wayne businesses, considering how their clients’ products and services may be marketed, sold, and used in that part of the world. Once back in class at IPFW, they will put together international business plans for each firm pointing out how they can improve their strategic positions on the global market.   

Not all of the students’ time will be spent on business; they will also have several cultural excursions, including visits to Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City in Beijing and a trip to the Great Wall. As part of their experience, the students will keep diaries of their experiences.

These students did not just decide to take this course and go on this trip; they were among a field of 40 top-level students who were invited to apply for admission to the class. Susan Byers, director of the DSBMS Student Center, said about half the invited students applied and from those the ten class members were selected.

Byers and Assistant Professor of Marketing Nichaya Nan Suntornpithug, the course instructor, will accompany the students on their journey as will Otto Chang, dean of the school. The group will arrive in Shanghai Friday afternoon and will stay there until Tuesday, when they move on to Beijing. They will leave China Sunday, March 15.

The cost of the trip is underwritten by local businessman Bill Lawson.